There’s a big part of me that wishes when I was coming out of college that I had a crystal ball that told me what to expect, or at least had someone who was older that I could look up to for guidance when it came to accepting my first position. I was the first in my family to ever graduate from college and had to learn through some tough life lessons what was important to set myself up for future success.

So if you’re…

  • Only a few weeks away from graduating and wondering where the time flew?
  • Currently interviewing and feeling overwhelmed.
  • Stressed out about the thought of student loans kicking in soon? Not to mention, gone are the days where mom and dad helped with the allowances.
  • Are conversations around insurance and taxes making their way into your life, wait… what? Now you’re probably wondering how in the world you’re supposed to figure this all out?

Don’t worry, you’ll get through it…

Millions of people before you have experienced this stage of going from college to the “REAL WORLD”. It’s a time for creating space in your life and preparing for the transition.  

Below are great ways to prep yourself physically, emotionally and financially in order to be successful as you head into your next phase of life… Real adulthood with a Real career.

1. Learn to trust yourself and if you don’t… start.

The world is filled with opportunities and they will present themselves to you when they’re supposed to. The more you’re able to hone in and trust your gut, the closer you will be on your path to happiness. 

2. Walk, run, planks, yoga.

Find some type of exercise you enjoy doing to help release the old energy and stress while you go through this process. Even if it’s taking the stairs verses the elevator or planking while watching Netflix, I encourage you to do something active. By doing this you are sending a message to the universe that you’re taking care of yourself and ready for all of the opportunities that await.

3. Develop a nature release ritual.

This is a great way to get connected with your higher self and prepare for this new career transition. One of my favorites is going to the beach, picking up rocks, bringing them back and writing career related beliefs I want to let go on one side and on the other side write down a new belief I want to emotionally instill in me. I then take the rocks back to the ocean and release them into the waves. Every time I’ve done this for multiple aspects of my life, I’ve had things in my life happen faster. You could also use leaves or simply write in the dirt or sand and create your own letting go ritual. If you live somewhere with little access to nature like the city, then use a piece of paper to write down beliefs you’re letting go, rip it up into tiny pieces and flush it down the toilet… I’ve done that too and it feels great.

4. Max out the 401K.

Developing this habit early on will set you up for life (like…a nice retirement fund). I wished someone would’ve programed this one into my head. When I was in my twenties, I saved minimal in my 401k and one year I ended up blowing it all on doing upgrades to my house. The following few years, I didn’t save at all. Thankfully now that I have learned from my past mistakes, I am building a nice (money) cushion for myself.

5. Emergency fund!!

I can’t stress this enough. Each paycheck, send a certain amount over to an account that you don’t touch, before the money hits your checking. A good rule of thumb is to have a fund with 6-12 months of your monthly expenses. Note: emergency funds are just that… for 911 NOT the latest car or business opportunity to invest in.

6. Handle loans like a Boss.

Research and see if consolidation of loans makes sense for you. Check out  http://www.studentloanhelp.org/ or https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans/consolidation

7. Don’t avoid being responsible, proceed with caution.

I get it, there’s constant temptation to buy a new car, maybe even lease, new clothes, increase the size of your living situation and feel grown up. I’m not saying you can’t do those things, however what I am saying is if your value is to be financially free, then you have to adopt the behaviors that get you there.

8. Find creative and fun ways to enjoy your lifestyle without getting into debt. 

Rent the Runway, Purses, Thredup, Eventbrite are all great examples. 

9. Build relationships with people from all different teams within your new organization.

Figure out who’s the top 1% of each team and align yourself with them. This will be the quickest way to acclimate, add value and contribute.

This should be an exciting time to visualize who you are destined to become and this new career is another stepping stone because you’ve been preparing for your journey all along.

Congratulations on the big accomplishment – You got this…

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